Missional Student Ministry
Does a name matter? Do words make a difference? I think so. If I am following my GPS and it tells me to turn right, and I turn left because I don’t think that word “right” matters, I’m lost. Now we understand that with directions, but what about whether we call a gathering of young adults, ranging from 7th to 12th grades, youth groups or student ministries. Does that really make a difference? In essence, probably not. However, if one thinks of their gathering as a group that has no real significant purpose, than to be catered to and entertained, then we got a problem.
Whether we at Vann refer to our youth ministry as youth groups or student ministries, how we understand our purpose is critical to our future. If you are a parent or guardian of a child in the youth group at Vann, I hope you will make it a priority to be involved at our next parent meeting next Sunday (Nov. 7th) night at 7PM.
I recently came across this comment from Alvin Reid who is an evangelism professor at Southeastern Seminary.
“Here are a few examples of changes I believe are good, and are driven by the gospel: From event-driven student ministry to missional student ministry. This one is only recently starting to happen, but it is happening in increasing ways. In the short time I have given focus to student ministry I have had many discussions with some of the most outstanding student pastors in America. A great and fundamental shift is happening, from treating teens like preschoolers to engaging them in the mission, from entertainment and activities to mission trips and discipleship, from a youth “group” to a student “ministry.” Watch and see this growing movement. Jim Elliot said, “Children are arrows in a quiver, and they are to be trained as missionaries and shot at the Devil.” Student ministry seen as training a generation of missionaries is driven by student pastors ready to change, and by a millennial generation ready for a challenge.”
What are your thoughts?